Many Americans Got Rich During The Pandemic – Especially This Group

Americans got richer pandemic

It’s hard to look at an event such as the Covid-19 pandemic and say “well, there were some bright spots” but, well, there were some bright spots.

People found high-paying jobs that involve never leaving the house, started a side hustle, stayed home more with family, and paid off a ton of credit card debt.

The Federal Government also paused some student loan and mortgage payments, allowing people to keep whatever money they were earning.

Those are all good things that happened because of the pandemic and most will have positive long-term effects.

Here’s another positive outcome from a year of isolation due to Coronavirus – Americans are $13.5 trillion richer.

From the Wall Street Journal:

“U.S. households added $13.5 trillion in wealth last year, according to the Federal Reserve, the biggest increase in records going back three decades.

Many Americans of all stripes paid off credit card debt, saved more, and refinanced into cheaper mortgages.

That challenged the conventions of previous economic downturns.

In 2008, for example, U.S. households lost $8 trillion.

So was the government’s financial response. The U.S. borrowed, lent and spent trillions of dollars to keep the economy from plunging further than it did.

These actions were at the center of the unusual nature of both the recession and the recovery. They have also powered much of the stock market’s unexpected boom.”

All in all, the country and economy are rebounding because of government interventions designed to prevent a complete collapse.

Unfortunately, the working and middle classes aren’t getting their fair share of the money. Americans got richer but not the ones who needed the money the most.

Naturally, the people already flush with funds made the most money during the pandemic.

While stimulus payments and expanded unemployment insurance helped many in the working class survive, the wealthiest group of Americans received a disproportionate share of the benefits.

According to the WSJ, 70 percent of that $13.5 trillion “went to the top 20 percent” and a third of the money “went to the top one percent.”

An April 2021 report by Forbes estimated that U.S. billionaires got about $1.2 trillion richer during the pandemic.

Long story short, the benefits were heavily distributed among the rich.

As is usually the case, the rich get richer in the middle of a crisis.

[via WSJ]

Chris Illuminati

Chris Illuminati is the author of five books and has written about personal finance, wealth, debt management, and entrepreneurship for numerous outlets including Wise Bread, Grow or Die, and Bankrate.